Rising star Tababi Devi has won the gold medal at the Commonwealth Judo Championships 2018. The 16-year-old from Manipur clinched the top spot in the 44kg category at the meet in Jaipur on Thursday.
The 16-year-old from Manipur seemed to carry on from where she had left at the 2018 Youth Olympic Games in October this year. Tababi Devi had become India’s first judoka to win an Olympic medal at any level, senior or junior.
The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) congratulated her on the Commonwealth gold medal.
No regrets in life. Only lessons learned.
Tababi Devi set down a moment of muse and motivation, when she narrowly missed a Judo Gold for #TeamIndia at @youtholympics! Today she won Gold in the Commonwealth Judo Championships 2018#IAmTeamIndia🇮🇳
📸 @OISphotos & Tababi herself😊 pic.twitter.com/3YKPYqL6Mq
— Team India (@ioaindia) November 8, 2018
India’s lone judoka at the meet, she had won the silver medal in the 44kg Judo event at the Youth Games held at Buenos Aires, Argentina. She lost the title match to Venezuela’s Maria Gimenez.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had described her silver medal as truly special.
Tababi Devi Thangjam achieved a marvellous feat at the 2018 Youth Olympic Games. She won a Silver medal in Judo in the women's 44kg category. This medal is truly special in India's Olympic history. It was great interacting with her today. pic.twitter.com/d7ZjMYgIkf
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 21, 2018
Her motivating story had been highlighted by Prime Minister Modi in his Mann ki Baat address last month.
Fighter To The Core
The daughter of a labourer and a fish seller, Tababi Devi Thangjam did not have an easy road to her first gold medal, at the sub-junior nationals in 2016. She went on to become the Asian Cadet champion in 2017.
She has been praised by coaches for her feet movement and quick reflexes, and won the gold medal at the Cadets Asian Cup in May and the Asian Cadet Championships held in June this year.
— Doordarshan National (@DDNational) June 23, 2018
A report in The Indian Express after her performance at the Beunos Aires Youth Games gave some interesting insights into Tababi Devi’s passion for judo.
She was introduced to the sport at the Judo Federation of India’s Mayai Lambi Sports Academy, and often missed school to attend coaching sessions without telling her parents. She received coaching from A Sorjit Meitei, Surachandra Singh and A Rupachandra Singh.
“There were more than 50 trainees at the academy but Tababi would always be the first to start training,” coach Meitei told The Indian Express.